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Leaving portable hifi - it's too silly - Page 3

post #31 of 935
I think most people find this stuff out sooner or later. If you really need an amp for portability, either your PDAP is likely not cutting it or your using the wrong headphone.

Its not that I do not agree that the iQube and PICO $500 truly portable amp make portable devices sound better, but there is no way that those portable headphones you use on average should need an additional $500 device in the middle to sound good, and $500 is many more times more effective at increasing quality for something like the HD600 or HD650 full sized headphones when spent on a good full-sized piece of equipment.

I fully believe a good portable cd player can rival the iMod. There really seems to be no such thing as anything close to being high-end in the portable arena, but I will bet good money that a simple 1st generation shuffle and UE11 IEM will blow any other similarly priced rig out of the water and into a different category. Get a decent DAP, a quality IEM or decent portable headphones, and skip the middle stuff in favor for something at home. Its just better, honestly.

If you really need an amp, DIY a mini-3 and call it quits. Its just the order of things really; source, headphones, then amp, then analog cables, the rest is just expensive extra icing. If you have any crap in the chain, it only makes it as strong as the weakest link, its obvious though that your top two priorities should be your source and headphones. For portable listening done by the non-homeless, that should be plenty.
post #32 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by yukihiro View Post
haha, i was looking at that chart yesterday. i'm new to the "experience" also, but my ears don't lie when it comes to the ringing in my ear as a result of the highs being too much. i agree that it's probably a result of the more bass oriented fiio. i'm just taking a guess, but looking at the chart, is it boosting the low end and slightly bringing down the high end? either way, i just like how it sounds with my 325i's
I agree that sustained periods of treble heavy music is a recipe for tinnitus You're correct about the frequency response, but it doesn't say anything about how it could modify the actual sound beyond volume. For instance it could take the rough edge off the highs by reducing the strength of their attack, smoothing their presence, or it could just be an equaliser (anything is debatable).

Whatever the case, any future headphone purchases should be based on the sound of the 325i+FiiO combination (not 325i alone), since that is your preferred sound signature. Glad you like it
post #33 of 935
I've been there and backed down again. I topped out with iMod, ALO cryo dock and Xin Reference but in the end got tired of the size. I then had a Xin SuperMini, still the ALO cryo dock and iPod Nano 3rd gen but size still annoyed me when I also had to carry my phone. With the arrival of the 3G iPhone and the Etymotics HF2 I still get as much enjoyment from my music but in a much much smaller package. I can't see myself go back to carrying a bigger rig.

However as I also travel a lot I do have a nice pcdp based hotelroom rig that I set up at the hotel and use at night and that is surely a lot better than the iPhone and also I like to peruse music shops (espcially second hand) after work hours and it is nice to be able to listen to the cd's right away.
post #34 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by wavoman View Post
Looking out the big Ahwahnee Lodge window at the Yosemite mountains by moonlight at midnight, you and your girl (wife) both listening to the same "right" music is magic man, I guarantee it works.
Off topic: Damn you!!! I love that place... I want to be there right now...
post #35 of 935
It's an interesting rant but was about as well documented and cited as any of the reviews which completely disagree with you.

Some of the points are what they are - battery life and such, but "built from poop" and "sounds like crap" just doesn't carry much actual meaning. Still, I appreciate hearing a dissenting opinion in the mix - personally I haven't ventured into portable amps as the portability just isn't sufficient for me.
post #36 of 935
Oh yeah! powerful setup for stand speakers

post #37 of 935
Excellent job Jackson .

I was lucky enough to have considered much of this before I ever really got in to portables, but there definitely was a time when I thought I was going to end up with a rig much like what you have now. Certainly portable application makes a lot of sense to some people, but for me I simply never needed to conserve space or travel.

If I would take away anything from this, it is to make decisions for yourself. People have and always will talk up a lot of products, but that never means that it will sound exactly how you imagined or fit your tastes in the slightest.
post #38 of 935
While respecting the OP's opinion, I have to disagree, completely and totally.

After being a "budget" audiophile for 25 years, I am amazed at the quality of sonics I am hearing in a portable rig (5.5G iPod > ALO LOD > SR 71a > TF-10).

Given the cost of the "high-end" I find the cost to performance ratio of this system stunning.

Mostly, I just love being able to listen to such wonderful, involving audio, in my office, or in the living room, or on the plane.

Truly a golden time to be involved in this hobby
post #39 of 935
Well, looking at your first photo of your rig...who's really going to walk around with all that (especially in the summer if you're not wearing a jacket)? I would get frustrated with the hobby as well.

I use a H1xx-->MicroDAC-->SR71/SR71a as my main rig so I know all about bulk. The gains in using this combination are great when it comes to sound quality. However...not once...not ever....have I ever really considered walking around with it. It is transportable for hotels and airplanes, but that's it. Anybody being honest with themselves has to eventually come to that conclusion.

For the newbies, is the quest for audio nirvana worth it? I say "Yes" if you are looking to use portable equipment as your single main rig (home, bedside, and transportable). When you are truly mobile, you just pick and choose the components you need to keep things practical and your ears happy. If it's just the ipod and IEM's, than so be it.
post #40 of 935
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfen68 View Post
Well, looking at your first photo of your rig...who's really going to walk around with all that (especially in the summer if you're not wearing a jacket)? I would get frustrated with the hobby as well.

I use a H1xx-->MicroDAC-->SR71/SR71a as my main rig so I know all about bulk. The gains in using this combination are great when it comes to sound quality. However...not once...not ever....have I ever really considered walking around with it. It is transportable for hotels and airplanes, but that's it. Anybody being honest with themselves has to eventually come to that conclusion.

For the newbies, is the quest for audio nirvana worth it? I say "Yes" if you are looking to use portable equipment as your single main rig (home, bedside, and transportable). When you are truly mobile, you just pick and choose the components you need to keep things practical and your ears happy. If it's just the ipod and IEM's, than so be it.
I think you've nailed it here. Personally, I use choice of two amps, Imod and Klipsch image at home. When i go "portable" it's with a Nano and older pair of Ety4p. But I can still carry amp/DAC combination in a Headroom bag if I want to, but am increasingly finding the Ety/Nano combo is just fine for going to the bookstore, library, etc.
post #41 of 935
At the end of the day, if it isn’t making you happy then don’t do it. Head-fi is a hobby that should be enjoyed. I have reached the tipping point many times over the last several years and have gone through periods of accumulating gear and then slimming the herd as well.

As far as portable being ‘worth it’ that is also highly subjective. For me, it is definitely worth it as portable is how I spend the majority of time listening to music. Also the convenience of an iPod far outweighs the hassle of a pcdp.

A full on home or office rig for me has proven to not be worth it as I have spent significantly more money in doing so and have found that the cost to benefit ratio has been way out of line simply because I don’t have the time to sit down and listen to a home set up.

Get a recent generation iPod, encode in lossless and go from there. Get a pair of Koss KSC 75 for $15 or PX100’s and enjoy it. Really, if you want to know where the biggest, best bang for your buck lies…it is the UE11. Even without an amp it is some of the finest sound I have ever heard. I could happily live with the UE11 and an iPod and no home headphone rig.

As far as portable amps and LODs go, I view that as a part of the hobby. If it is too big, too much of a hassle or something you don’t want to deal with, then don’t.

Synergy also comes into play. On a whim, I figured out that the UE5c, a 2g Nano, 4 wire Jumbo Cryo LOD and a Tomahawk are an incredible combination. Honestly, I would take that rig over any of the home rigs I have had, simply due to the sound and portability.

The Edition 9’s aren’t the best phones for portable listening. They are also a matter of preference and are not my cup of tea (or beer or whatever)

Portable will never be what a home based rig can be. Look at the size of the components, the power, the size of the headphones, etc.

Looking at this whole post, it is more of a ramble than anything else. Personally, I enjoy portable audio and get a lot of pleasure from the hobby. To each his own.
post #42 of 935
Well, my portable rig is my main rig. I don't intend to take the next step and go into true high end listening, spending thousands of dollars to get the best I can and listen at home. At least in a near future.

Also, I want to keep my rig at least transportable, but at the same time trying to get the best SQ out of it. Just bought a ALO SXC cable to try to improve it, and if I could get my hands on a 5.5G iMod from RWA, with that VCAP dock from ALO, I'd certainly want to keep it. It would still be portable? probably not. Would it be transportable? Yes. Would I be getting the best SQ out from my iPod? Probaby so. That's what I want from my rig

EDIT: btw, this is a truly enjoyable discussion. I'm pleased to read each and every post here.
post #43 of 935
Excellent write-up!
Better leave before its too late...
post #44 of 935
digihead, you hit the nail on the head, so to speak.
The iem is by far the most important item determining SQ.

An ipod lossless with a great iem will sound better than a mediocre iem with a great amp.

IMO sources and amps have gotten so good that the difs are more subtle than the difs between phones.

Same holds for speaker based audio. The speaker makes the most dif.
post #45 of 935
Although I agree to some extent with the OP's thought, I love these gears because portable is beautiful
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